Opening Statement



Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Ontario Election Teacher Union Platforms?

Under construction ....



From the UFCW Political Action blog @ Here!

As a part of my ongoing Teacher Free Speech Ontario Election Guide I am adding the various union on line info links here for your perusal. The main focus will be on the teacher union sites, with a critique of each to follow. You are also encouraged to comment below the blog. 

Other useful union links, for example for the Working Family Coalition, the Ontario Federation of Labour [OFL] and United Food Workers of Canada [UFCW] are also being added. The teacher unions all usually contribute to the Working Families campaign. Most of us as teacher unionists also belong to the OFL. I find some of the UFCW contributions to be outstanding. I will add others as they become available.

Some of the teacher union Ontario election sites are readily available on line. Others not. I am surprised at how many are restricted mostly to a members area with little public information being made readily available to add to the overall effort. It is not the usual culprits either, as you will note from the missing links below. If you can forward the missing ones to me it would be much appreciated. In the meantime I will continue my informal on line search as an average voter seeking more information on the union position in the 2014 Ontario Spring election to see what I can find .....

Hope this helps!

David C


The OFL election site is @ Stop Hudak @ Also see Defeat Conservative Anti Worker Laws @  Rights at Work . The OFL has been exemplary in preparing the Ontario unions for Hudaks neo con attack starting most notably in organizing against his Right 2 Work 4 Less Plans in the last by elections. Catchy catch phrases and easy to find and download flyers and info sheets are a big plus in the accessibility department along with the extensive local training sessions provided to members and executives alike across the province.

Critique: If the Year of the MOU left a bad taste in your union mouth you might want to consider participating in the election effort through your involvement with the OFL rather than your own affiliate. Most of us are also OFL members. Just something to think about if you are feeling too cynical to otherwise help out with the good fight!

OECTA election site is @ Speak For Children



OECTA's Speak for Children has strong recognizable branding from the successful 2008 + 2011 provincial election campaigns. Studies had shown that voters respect and trust in teachers was high, if not in the unions themselves. In short, rather than directly  emphasize contract issues, the focus is essentially on the idea of good happy professionally well trained teachers being able to take care of your children well. The basic question being asked is which party will best help us provide this service. Speak for Children is thus more so presented as an educational advocacy campaign rather than as a direct endorsement or put down of any one party. The answer to "who speaks for children" should speak for itself in the public and members minds.

Critique: Reader comments have emphasized concern that it's time for more focus to be put on directly addressing the teachers contract needs in the election, especially since the OLP collective bargaining strips in 2012. The high standards and training of our Ontario teachers should make that an easy case to make; Ontarians get what they pay. We have nothing to be ashamed of nor to hide despite the constant teacher put downs by our neo con proponents. 

Perhaps OECTA should speak out more directly to challenge that mindset and the assumptions about us that such claims carry. Still Speaks for Children has proven to be a winning campaign. After a third run out on the election trail it could well be time to reconsider and move on afterwards since it otherwise seems too late now.

OECTA's Speak for Children campaign is easy to publicly find and access on line. Also to recognize in the brands flyers, billboards and bus shelter posters across the province. It will be interesting + reassuring to also see if the OECTA Code of Secrecy and Silence is likewise being lifted somewhat after the OECTA MOU debacle + efforts to stamp out + discredit any and all dissent. President James Ryan has promised to improve OECTA Communications. We will see how transparent OECTA and indeed the other provincial affiliates are, when it's time for endorsements to be made. In OECTA's case will the campaign simply prove to be a toothless endorsement for the union's past close Liberal ties after the terrible MOU beating its members sustained

Balance could help rebuild some much lacking OECTA credibility + esteem in the eyes of the doubtful from within OECTA and without. OLP partisanship will prove very hard to cover up and hide. One hopes the high standard the OECTA Speaks for Children brand sets is not simply a case of all form too little content when it comes to standing up strongly, clearly + openly with all three parties for its teacher members post July 5 2012.



Visit ETFO site for more info + to send a Huda-pic message!

ETFO election site is @Building Better Schools

Many thanks to Lisa M for forwarding this! We know she is a real trooper. You can visit the site for more info and critique in Comments below, or I will later.

Critique:This was hard to find. Hmmm. Last year ETFO's communications were the most open and comprehensive of all the affiliates. Since then not so much anymore. Too bad. They were exemplary. My Comments on "member only" portals follow below. 

[NOTE: I am sitting on my couch sicker than @#!$%. Caught some bug I guess. I watch the news channel and see Timbo all the time. Everything about him annoys, from the platitudes to the condescending, vacant smile. And I don't think that's coz I'm not feeling well, but it DOES NOT help. So, enough 4 now ......]


OSSTF election site is @ Provincial Election Watch

Critique: What a dull name for a campaign. Zzzzzzz. I will investigate the site more thoroughly to see if it has any sizzle. I'm wondering if OSSTF's low key election silence could be potentially disturbing after the unhappy conclusion to the 2012-13 MOU protests and former President Ken Coran's alleged defection to the Liberal party.

AEFO election site is @ ????

Working Family Coalition is @ Working Families


Working Families is very much supported by all of the provinces unions, with a clear focus on exposing PC Tim Hudaks Neo Con agenda. Left unchallenged his outlandish claims and attacks will prove fatal. It seems it's all right for business, corporate, media and other right wing interests to have lobby groups create a mindset and establish the election agenda but not the unions who they continually seek to discredit + destroy. Working families is very proactive and is not taking it sitting down. Bravo!

Critique: The Working Family is a good place to spend our election contributions during a year when neither the OLP or NDP are openly demonstrating support for our teacher unions. Nobody has yet explained nor for that matter promised to redress the wrongs of last years collective bargaining strips. The answer seems obvious to me. 'Nuff said!

A Final Point: Member only web access sites seem more common than ever this year. C'mon! Ontario has well over a hundred thousand teachers. Many families included teachers from more than one affiliate. We all talk. We are not stupid. Secrecy is a lost cause in our new social media age and most unbecoming. Besides, what has everybody got to hide????

COMMENTS?

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

This OECTA member loves those OPP ads about not voting for HUDAK. BRAVO!

Anonymous said...

Do we vote strictly for our own self interest? I guess so. There has been so much spin on the platforms of all 3 parties that it's even more confusing. Trying to make an informed decision is nearly impossible. I also don't believe in voting for one party to keep another out. I am a teacher and just may sit this one out. How sad that I can't find anything to endorse in any of the 3 candidates.

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